One time football supremo, Nii Odartey Lamptey has stated that retired national footballers need to be assigned to the various national teams indicating that if a sports minister proclaims that he knows nothing about football, clearly the sector will be in shambles as being experienced.
Mr. Lamptey added although it is not cast in stone that a former footballer would automatically make a good coach or trainer, there is need for the Ghana Football Association (GFA) to tap into the experience, skill and exposure of players who have toured the world during their playing days to help revive the falling standards of football and the other sporting disciplines.
The 1991 fifth Best African Footballer of the Year disclosed that recently discharged coach of the Super Eagles team of Nigeria was his key to entering Europe when the African Cup winner facilitated his move to Belgium side Anderlecht.
Lamptey made the disclosure in an interview with Kwame Owusu Danso one-half of music duo ‘Echo’, who produced hits such as ‘Shake Your Walewale and Gologolo’.
When Danso now a presenter and show host with Capital TV and X Live asked how his footballing career begun, Lamptey intimated that whiles living with his father in Kumasi at age of 14, he played for a local team, recounting that his performances caught the eye of an under 16 agent of the national youth team who invited him to the national side. After participating in a tournament in Belgium, foreign interest developed culminating in his personal sojourn to Belgium.
Nii Odartey Lamptey explained as a boy with no passport, he smuggled himself out of Ghana to Nigeria on a bus whereupon Keshi had a passport made for him with the name ‘Steven Keshi Jnr’.
The onetime FIFA Best Player however bemoaned his limited education as being a cause of opportunists having their way citing the case of his manager Antonio Caliendo who although represented the interest of Maradona and Roberto Baggio not only illegally received his signing-on fee but also took his winning bonuses and other incentives in addition to activating a clause in his contract which led to a shock move to Aston Villa resulting in a decline in his form and influence.
On why he set up Glow Lamp school, the 1991 FIFA U-17 World Championship winner said he pledged to erect a facility to help educate children so they won’t go through the hardships he’s been through adding that he was glad the school had chalked impressive success in a decade since its establishment. He however explained since his divorce to wife Gloria, is yet to be finalized, celebrations will be announced when the divorce proceedings conclude.
He advised current footballer to appreciate the possibility of having short footballing careers due to dip in form, injury or misfortune striking adding that smart investment as against profligate spending is the key to staying afloat or betting bogged down in poverty.